Blog - Oneonta World of Learning - Results from #14

Enriching Life

Through Play

Friday, 07 June 2013 20:21

Dig Dirt Day 2013 - Register now!

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Dig Dirt Day is on Friday, June 21, 2013.

Presented by Oneonta World of Learning, SUNY Oneonta and Hartwick Archaeologists, children with their grown ups will experience a real live archeological dig, make a "fossil", learn flint knapping with Doug Idleman. Additionally, participants may explore Pine Lake. There will be a life guard on duty for swimming. Boats and life jackets are available!

Registration is required to visit the archeaological site but NOT required for any of the additional activities.

Dress for a mess and for water activities!
Cost is $5 per child

Activities are on going from 12:30 to 4:30 pm. Tours of the dig site are limitied and will be offered at 1:00, 2:00, and 3:00. Tour sizes are strictly limited to 15 kids (each with their grown-up) per tour. Tours are an hour long and the only way to see the archeological dig.
Those not participating in tours will still have a great time participating in the additional activities.

Location is Pine Lake Environmental Center, 1894 Charlotte Creek Rd, West Davenport, NY

All tours are now filled. However, there are lots of additional activities to enjoy, and if there are cancellations we will fiteveryone in on a tour that we possibly can. Tour sizes are limited due to the sensitive nature of an archeaological dig site and the requirements of our partners at Hartwick and SUNY Oneonta.

Click here to sign up for 1pm tour - The 1pm tour is now filled!!!

Click here to sign up for 2pm tour - The 2pm tour is now filled!

Click here to sign up for 3pm tour- The 3pm tour is now filled!

To sign up more than one child, complete the survey as many times as required.

Wednesday, 05 June 2013 01:08

Phunny Putty

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phunny putty

Many many thanks to all of the volunteers and attendees of this past weekend's Ice Cream Social!  What an amazing event!! 
An extra-special thanks to Mary Peterson, a member of OWL's education committee. She is such a knowledgeable and generous person- truly an asset to the OWL community.  Below, Mary has shared her special recipe for "Phunny Putty"- an intriguing ooze & sensory delight.

Thanks, Mary!!!



20-Mule Team Borax®

Water (some hot, some cold)

Dosage cup or measuring spoon

Elmer's Glue-All® white glue

Plastic cup

Food Coloring

Craft Stick

Small zipper-type bag

Glow-in-the-dark pigment (optional)



1.) Pour 12 oz. of hot water into a container.  A soda bottle works well.  Add 2 tablespoons of Borax, and cover tightly.  Shake the bottle. Most of the Borax should dissolve, but some should settle to the bottom.  If not, add a bit more Borax until you cannot dissolve any more.  This is called a saturated solution, which means that the water has absorbed as much Borax as it can.

2.) Pour 25 mL (5 teaspoons) of glue into the plastic cup.  Try to get all the glue into the cup for accurate measurement. (you can measure 25 mL of water into a cup, mark the line at the water level, then pour the water out and measure glue to that line.)

3.)  Pour 20 mL (4 teaspoons) of water into the glue and mix it up with the craft stick.  The ratio between the glue and water is important for the phunny putty to be the right consistency.  In some settings, it is a good idea to premix a large quantity of glue and water in the right proportions, then use 45 mL of that mixture and proceed with the rest of the recipe.

4.) Add 3 drops of food coloring to the glue and water mixture.  Mix well with the craft stick.  You may add 1/8 tsp. of glow-in-the-dark pigment now.  The colors will be pastel.  Adding enough color to make red, for instance, instead of pink, will cause the putty to ooze color and be very messy.

5.) Add 15 mL (3 teaspoons) of the Borax solution to the glue and water mixture.  Mix well with the craft stick and watch what happens! If your cup has more gluey-looking liquid, add a little more Borax solution.  Stir until you have no large globs of glue.  You may need to scrape the phunny putty off the stick and stir some more.

6.)  When your Phunny Putty forms a fairly solid blob, pull it off the stick and squish it between your hands.  It becomes less sloppy as you play with it.  Set the putty on the table (not a paper towel), wipe your hands on a paper towel, then mop up the sloppy stuff on the table.  Push the towel into your cup, and put in the trash.

7.)  If you keep your Phunny Putty in a plastic bag between using it, it should stay nice for a long time!

CAUTION:  Phunny Putty will stick to paper and fabric! The kitchen table is a good place to play with your phunny putty.

Chemistry Explanation: Elmer's Glue contains polyvinyl alcohol, a polymer whose molecules are cross-linked to form an extended network.  The cross-linking agent is the tetraborate ion.  This ion is formed when the Borax, sodium tetraborate, is dissolved in water forming a mixture of boric acid and tetraborate ions. The result is a gel that is similar to Silly Putty®.

Wednesday, 22 May 2013 01:59

6th Annual Ice Cream Social

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Please join us on Sunday, June 2, 2013 from 1-5pm at the Oneonta Boys & Girls Club (70 River St, Oneonta, NY) for OWL's 6th Annual Ice Cream Social!  (No admission, donations are welcome)

FREE ice cream & activities brought to you by Oneonta World of Learning and our local sponsors! The day is just packed full of activities, performances, & demonstrations including:
Phunny Putty (see the rainbow of colors available in the photo above!)
Home Depot Crafts
Remote Controlled Aircraft
The 4-H Robot
ARC obstacle course
& much much more!

Pit Crew BBQ available for purchase
The OWL Pop-up Gift Shop will be open for business.

Live Entertainment

1:00 Stanley and Wade School of Dance
1:30 Oneonta Tae Kwon Do
2:00 Zumba
2:30 Miss Pam/ Music Together
3:00 Schenevus a cappella choir
3:30 Jin Shil Martial Arts
4:00 Tinny Wilkins Indonesian Music and Dance
4:30 Elite Dance Studio and the Stallionettes

Wednesday, 10 April 2013 02:20

Opt Out Information Session

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Friday, 15 March 2013 02:20

Introducing the new OWL playgroup!

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Join OWL on Thursday mornings 9:30-11:30 at the Wilber Mansion (11 Ford Ave, Oneonta) for our new playgroup!  We have a wide variety of toys and activities (including a room full of tunnels and playhuts!) 

Suggested donation: $5 per family

(Beverages, snacks, & baked goods are also available for sale)

Follow us on facebook for information about more OWL events and local opportunities!


Wednesday, 30 January 2013 11:28

Science Saturday - Go Green!

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Science Saturday - Go Green!

Join Oneonta World of Learning (OWL) and the Science Discovery Center to explore green energy, learn about soil and build your own composter. The event is at the Southside Mall on Saturday Feburary 2nd from 10am to 1pm. Activities are appropriate for children ages 2 and up with a grown up. $5 suggested donation.


Thursday, 10 January 2013 00:50

KidzScience: Alternative Energy Workshop

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Oneonta World of Learning (OWL) Presents:
KidzScience: Alternative Energy

Kids in grades 3-5 will participate in a hands on, inquiry based program to learn about alternative energy, solar and wind power, and how to use less fossil fuel. This is a 4 session cumulative program. Attendance is expected at all 4 sessions.
When: Thursdays January 17,24,31 and February 7 from 3:30-4:30 p.m.
Where: Oneonta Boys and Girls Club, 70 River Street
Cost: FREE

 DSC7075-8 small

Membership to the Oneonta Boys and Girls Club is required and can be completed on the first day of the program. Membership is free. Parents are not required to stay with their children.

In the event that a session needs to be cancelled due to inclement weather, a make-up session is scheduled for Thursday, February 14 from 3:30-4:30.

Space is limited, sign up early. To sign up, follow this link: KidzScience sign up. For more information, call 607-431-8543 or email

Tuesday, 18 December 2012 01:09

First Night!

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OWL is happy to announce that we will be providing family friendly games during the First Night festivities in Oneonta. Join us from 5 to 7 pm on Tuesday December 31st in the atrium at the Foothills Performing Arts Center on Market Street. There is no cost for participation in these children's activities.

first night puppet

There is a long list of additional festivities available during First Night. Check out their website at!

Friday, 16 November 2012 02:21

Volunteers take Paintfest to a new level

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Paintfest volunteers and organizers took this popular, annual event to a new level this year, with over 180 children in attendance, and nearly as many grown up companions.

The Oneonta High School Art Honor Society did a wonderful job, acting out a scene as Jackson Pollack working in his studio and allowing participants to 'interview' this enigmatic artist. In the next room, children got to create their own works in genuine Jackson Pollack style - needless to say it was bit messy!


Spin art (with and with out a strobe light), marble painting, string painting, bubble painting, and milk 'painting' were among additional activities, all in keeping with this year's theme of 'Paint in Motion.'


Our volunteers this year were wonderful: OHS Art Honor Society, Kappa Delta Pi, Alpha Phi Omega, Hartwick Art Department, Hartwick Art History Students & our friends and families.


Many thanks to our sponsors: The Arc Otsego, Directive, Townsquare Media Group, The Daily Star, Hometown Oneonta, CSEA workers through-out Otsego County, A&D Taxi & Transport, Rent-A-Wreck, Insurance Professionals of Chenango Valley (IPCV), Bella Michael's, The Tubia Family, Tom and Amy Pondolfino, The Rissberger Family, Tri-County Glass, Ed and Helen Sorensen, Romanzo and Company CPA's, The Cook Family, Catskill Mountain Embroidery, Golden Artist Colors Inc, WSKG Education, Lowe's.

Saturday, 03 November 2012 16:06

Paintfest! Sat Nov 10th

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Oneonta World of Learning (OWL) is proud to announce our

5th Annual Paintfest!


Co-sponsored by The Arc Otsego.

Join us on
Saturday November 10th
10am - 2pm

at The Arc Otsego day services center
63 Lower River St.

(Turn onto Co. Rd. 8, off Oneida St.)

This year's theme: PAINT IN MOTION. Experience painting in fun, creative and unexpected ways! Discover what it is like to paint like Jackson Pollack, and learn more about this enigmatic artist. Additional activities include spin art, roller painting, and more! No registration required.

Dress for a mess

* Free t-shirts for participants while supplies last! *

For ages 2-12 with a grown-up. Suggested donation $5 per child.

paintfest boys painting
Many thanks to our wonderful sponsors: Directive, Townsquare Media Group, The Daily Star, Hometown Oneonta, CSEA workers through-out Otsego County, A&D Taxi & Transport, Rent-A-Wreck, Insurance Professionals of Chenango Valley (IPCV), Bella Michael's, The Tubia Family, Tom and Amy Pondolfino, The Rissberger Family, Tri-County Glass, Ed and Helen Sorensen, Romanzo and Company CPA's, The Cook Family, Catskill Mountain Embroidery, Golden Artist Colors Inc, WSKG Education

For more information call 431-8543.

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